Read Everton vs Liverpool as Rodgers bring the Reds to Goodison Park for the Merseyside Derby on October 4, 2015.
Last season was a disastrous campaign by the Toffees’ standards as they finished 11th in the table, 15 points adrift of a European spot.
It is a big contrast this season as Martinez has managed to inject that free-flowing football that made him an instant hit at Goodison Park when he took over from David Moyes in 2013.
Everton have just one blip on their record so far in the top flight – a 2-0 defeat to title challengers Manchester City.
Aside from that, the Toffees have recorded three victories, one of which came against Chelsea, and three draws, with Ross Barkley seemingly finding his zest again, and the midfield partnership of Gareth Barry and James McCarthy looking solid.
Everton have also been boosted by the permanent return of winger Gerard Deulofeu, who is likely to earn more first-team chances after showing his promise in recent games, while Romelu Lukaku heads into this weekend’s derby in great form having scored twice in his side’s comeback win over West Bromwich Albion on Monday.
Ever since Liverpool lost Luis Suarez last season and Daniel Sturridge succumbed to injuries, the Reds have struggled to find the same attacking prowess that launched them to a title challenge in the 2013-14 campaign.
In fairness, replacing Suarez is an almost impossible task due to the Uruguayan’s quality, but add to the fact that Raheem Sterling and the club’s long-serving captain Steven Gerrard left in the summer, Liverpool have struggled to put opponents on the backfoot, and at times, have looked short of ideas.
Just seven goals have been scored by Liverpool in as many league games, and they went five games with just three goals in the bag, but they have been boosted by the return of Sturridge, who scored twice against Aston Villa in only his second game back from five months on the sidelines.
Danny Ings has also shown some promise having scored two goals in the Reds’ last three games in all competitions, but the defence remains shaky as Rodgers has not yet seemed to decide on his best centre-back partnership.
Dejan Lovren began the season partnering Martin Skrtel, but following a few blunders, as well as an injury, the Croatian has had to make way for Mamadou Sakho, who has shown strength but also has the occasional mistake in him.
Injuries have also been a problem for the Reds as they currently have Christian Benteke, Roberto Firmino and captain Jordan Henderson on the treatment table, which is giving Philippe Coutinho a lot of pressure to carry the team from an attacking standpoint.